Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Goodbye, Papa

After today's audience


Pope Benedict XVI's Final General Audience

From The Catholic Herald
Pope Benedict XVI has given an extraordinarily emotional and personal final address as pope to 200,000 pilgrims in St Peter’s Square.
Speaking off the cuff, he told the cheering crowd: “I’m moved. When I see you, I see the Church is alive.”
He said that when he was elected in 2005, his heart asked: “Lord, why do you ask me this? What do you ask of me?” Being pope, he said, means “not having any privacy”, belonging “always and totally to all, to the whole Church”.
But he said throughout his pontificate he perceived the presence of God “every day”. “The Lord has guided me,” he said. “I always knew the Lord was with us and that the Church was not mine, but his, and he would not let it sink.”
Read the full text at Vatican Radio

Monday, February 18, 2013

Interactive Site on Papal Conclave

Here's an interactive site that illustrates how a Papal Conclave works.

Pope Benedict XVI at Lenten Spiritual Exercises

Lenten Desert

Today if you shall hear his voice, harden not your hearts: As in the provocation, according to the day of temptation in the wilderness: where your fathers tempted me, they proved me, and saw my works. For the Lord hath promised a crown to them that watch.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Baby Boy Names

One of the interesting things about teaching is that I encounter very, shall we say, creative names of students. It used to be true of the South, but I think this is true everywhere in the States now. There's a sustained trend of giving children the most unusual names, so much so that pronouncing the child's name can be a source of embarrassment for both teacher and student. Setting aside the Antwans, there is, for instance, a Rah-sun in my school. Now, it's not that hard to pronounce, I admit, but it takes some getting used to since most of the time, I encounter Rashuns. After years of saying "Rashun" the tongue trips over the unusual "Rah-sun". Yes, the dash is part of the name. There is another child with the name Che'Kelvia. I don't understand the apostrophe. Apparently, the nomenclature is a combination of both father and mother's names.

Apparently, there's now a new trend-within-a-trend in naming baby boys. The hook? Defining a new masculinity. Riiiight. I say, it's more of the same feminizing of boys. Reject it, people! Stick with masculine names for boys. Don't get sucked into this oh-so-cool trend. Better yet, name your child after a saint!

I say up with Anthony! Patrick! Richard! Down with Cullen(puh-leez), Jax (Jacob is just fine, thank you very much), Jett (good grief!).

Here's the article describing the new trend.
"Rejecting the top names of the past century, more and more parents are choosing gender-neutral boys' names. Baby name expert Pamela Redmond Satran, co-author of Beyond Ava & Aiden, on how the new trend reflects a different ideal of masculinity."
Read the article here.

Here's a radical thought: Let's let boys be boys and girls be girls. Blurring gender lines doesn't make us sweeter or more peaceful or more human.

More modernism foolishness.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Anglicanorum Coetibus Progress

~via The Catholic Herald
Five traditionalist Anglican bishops have officially resigned this morning with the intention of taking up an English Ordinariate when it is set up.

This morning, the Rt Rev Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury accepted the resignation of three flying Church of England and two retired assistant bishops in what is a major development in the move towards establishing an Ordinariate in Britain.

The Rt Rev Andrew Burnham, Bishop of Ebbsfleet, the Rt Rev Keith Newton, Bishop of Richborough and Rt Rev John Broadhurst Bishop of Fulham as well as the Rt Rev Edwin Barnes the emeritus Bishop of Richborough and the Rt Rev David Silk, an emeritus assistant bishop of Exeter released a statement announcing their resignations.
Read more

I've not had much time to keep up with the Anglican world. Work keeps me quite busy planning liturgies, teaching...One thing I can say to Anglicans contemplating conversion (and it is a conversion, as I found in my own swimming the Tiber), the depth that one gains in coming into full communion with The One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church cannot be imagined until one is in it, living and practicing the Faith without worries of what part of the church will be degraded next. The confidence upon the Rock of the Church (yes, even with the misguided Catholics-in-name-only) frees you to learn to love God and learn happiness and grow in holiness.

Come on in, the water is fine!

Outrageous News

~A Miami woman and her boyfriend arrested for selling her a Best Buy parking lot. Read the details. This after last week's news of a mother microwaving her infant to death. What a sorry world we live in. Pray for the salvation of souls. I spent some time being outraged, then my better angels whispered, "Pray instead of raging."
It happened in the parking lot of a Best Buy, but there was nothing good about the sale taking place: a Holly Hill woman handing her 8-week-old grandson over to a stranger in exchange for $30,000.

Patty Bigbee, 45, originally offered the child for $75,000 before agreeing to a lower price, according to the Daytona Beach News-Journal.

Authorities would not say how the buyer originally found out the child was for sale, or whether the Internet was involved, but said the buyer became gravely concerned and immediately began working with police to set up a sting.

Bigbee and her boyfriend, 42-year-old Lawrence Work, arrived at the Daytona Beach store to meet the buyer Friday afternoon and began unloading a stroller and toys. Police waited until the child was safe in his new car seat before taking the pair into custody.....Police say she and Work had recently purchased a new Chevy Malibu, and the motive for selling the baby was largely financial...."They seemed like they loved him," said a neighbor who often observed Bigbee and Work outside their apartment with her grandson, "...but they were very...colorful."

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Religion in the 2010 Elections

~from The Pew Forum
Two of the largest religious groups in the electorate followed the same basic voting patterns in the 2010 elections for the U.S. House of Representatives as they have in prior elections: white Protestants voted overwhelmingly Republican and religiously unaffiliated voters cast their ballots overwhelmingly for Democrats. But Catholic voters, who had favored Democratic over Republican candidates by double-digit margins in the last two congressional elections, swung to the GOP in 2010. And within all three of these major religious groups, support for the Republican Party rose this year compared with 2006, matching or exceeding their levels of support for the GOP in any recent election. Republican gains among religious groups parallel the party’s broad-based gains among the overall electorate and white voters in particular.

Analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life of National Election Pool (NEP) exit poll data reported by CNN shows that white Protestants,1 a group that has long been one of the key components of the GOP coalition, voted for Republicans over Democrats in their congressional districts by a 69%-29% margin. This marks an increase of 6 points in Republicans’ share of the white Protestant vote compared with 2008, and an 8-point gain for Republicans compared with the last midterm election in 2006.

At the other end of the spectrum, the religiously unaffiliated supported Democrats over Republicans by an overwhelming margin in 2010 (66%-32%). But the exit polls also show that Republicans made gains even within this staunchly Democratic group, picking up 10 points compared with 2006. This increase is comparable in size to the GOP’s gains among white Protestants, a traditionally Republican group.

Among all Catholic voters, 54% voted for Republican congressional candidates in 2010, up 12 points compared with 2008. Among white Catholics, nearly six-in-ten (59%) voted Republican in 2010, compared with 39% who voted Democratic. By comparison, 52% of white Catholics voted for Republican congressional candidates in 2008, and 49% voted Republican in 2006.
Check out the chart at Pew

Monday, November 01, 2010

Happy Feast of All Saints!

by Charles Villiers Stanford

Justórum ánimæ in manu Dei sunt, et non taget illos torméntum malítiæ: visi sunt óculis insipiéntium mori: illi autem sunt in pace.

The souls of the just are in the hands of God and the torment of malice shall not touch them: in the sight of the unwise they seemed to die, but they are in peace.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bridezilla and the Organist

I am fortunate since I've not had to deal with any bridezillas at my current parish. However, in the past, that's another story. One bride from the past at a consultation said, "We want 'Every Breath You Take' by The Police." Uh, no. Have you actually listened to the words?! Followed by the tirade of "My family has worshiped here for generations...blah, blah, blah...."

I have had similar experiences as this hapless organist with funeral music. Even with a funeral liturgy planning booklet where the choices are clearly spelled out (no deviations), there is the inevitable, "Why can't we sing 'On Eagle's Wings'?" Or "Be Not Afraid" Or "Danny Boy" Or "Let There be Peace on Earth". Then throw in the usual "We've worshiped here for # years....."

Brrrrrrrrrrrrr. I'm thankful that our hymnal doesn't have any of those songs.

Younger Catholics More Devout

~from NBC Chicago
The Rev. Andrew Greeley, a prolific priest, sociologist and author is releasing a study based on a 2007 poll of more than 500 Catholics in Cook and Lake counties which says their faith is still burning brightly, reports the Chicago Tribune.

In “Chicago Catholics and the Struggles Within Their Church” Greely reports that 78 percent of respondents said Catholicism is either “extremely important” or “very important” in their lives.

The study found that parishioners gave a higher approval rating for their local priests than Cardinal Francis George, or even the Pope; and in many respects 20 and 30-somethings are more devout than older generations.

Greeley wrote that the survey found “two separate Catholic identities— an imaginative, story-telling identity and a rules identity,” reports the Tribune.

The study also discusses “Cafeteria Catholics,” those who still revere the sacraments, but don’t blindly follow the church's teachings on moral, religious and political issues.

Ah, so the Cafeteria Catholics revere the Sacraments but don't blindly follow the church's teachings. Eh, hem. These are the Thinking Catholics, those who won't let church's teachings interfere with their own interpretation of the Truth. The ones who decry Papal Authority but cling to their interpretation of Truth. In effect, they are their own pope.

Meanwhile, the other implication is that those of us who follow the Church's teachings are blind in our adherence. No chance that those who follow actually allowed two brain cells to be fired, or that any exercise of reason could have been employed to come to the conclusion that the Church's teachings are reasonable and therefore demands a response of docility and humility. Nah, freedom means autonomy from patriarchal and hierarchical Church structure.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Pontifical Solemn High Mass DVD now available

The Pontifical Solemn High Mass was celebrated by Bishop Edward Slattery of Tulsa on April 24, 2010. The Mass was at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC in celebration of the 5th Anniversary of Pope Benedict's inauguration as Holy Father of the Pilgrim Church on Earth. My family and some close family friends made the pilgrimage. Imagine my delight to see that my family and I are in this video! Order your copy via The Paulus Institute who sponsored this Mass. It was an extraordinary occasion.

Restoring the Sacred

Here is an inspirational video of the restoration of the parish church St. John Cantius in Chicago.

On Assignment Episode 1 - Saint John Cantius: Restoring the Sacred from StoryTel Foundation on Vimeo.

Fr. Philips here talks about how following the rubrics shows humility. By not imposing individual whims upon the liturgy, liturgy becomes transformative, transcendent.

Monday Merriment

Over at Chris Johnson's Bad Vestments blog, there is this post that I missed. H/T to Fr. Finigan at the Hermeneutic blog for posting it.

This is supposed to be a cope. One of the Eucharistic Prayers in the Episcopalian Liturgy goes like this:
At your command all things came to be:
the vast expanse of interstellar space,
galaxies, suns, the planets in their courses,
and this fragile earth, our island home.
There is this complementary hymn "Earth and all stars, loud crashing planets, sing to the Lord a new song." The hymn goes on to mention test tubes and other sundry things to give praise to God. It was a favorite of the youth at my former Episcopalian parish which was known for its innovative liturgies while maintaining the highest standard for liturgical music. Yes, Gregorian chant and polyphony alongside giant kites and origami bird hanging sculptures.

When liturgy becomes about us, it opens the door to a whole host of silliness. And no denomination is immune.

As Fr. Z urges: Say the Black, Do the Red.